The three programs were held in Jamaica, Ozone Park and Far Rockaway. At the one in in Rockaway, Sanders said he saw the impact the program had on one of his constituents first hand.
“A woman came up to me crying and I said 'What's the matter?'” he said. “She said that she had been unable to afford insulin and she's a diabetic. By coming to the program today, she was able to find somebody who paid for her insulin.
“In one sense, we saved her life,” he added. “This is a life changing event often.”
At the event in Jamaica, Sanders himself was able to benefit from the program. He stopped by a holistic and alternative medicine booth were he had his stress levels tested and his liver worked on. He also fond out different ways of changing his diet to eat healthier.
The program was emceed by Fred Buggs, a radio host with programs on Sirius/XM radio and 107.5 WBLS. Buggs, a longtime Queens resident, stressed the importance of programs like the senior expo.
“The information is priceless in a community like this, especially when it comes to the seniors who have been here for a while,” Buggs said.
Buggs said experts at the various events could provide residents with information about healthcare plans, getting loans, banking advice and tips about the real estate market from professionals. He added that the real human interaction is helpful to the residents of the community.
“Folks that have lived in this community desire this information without having to make a phone call and listen to the music playing in the background, then talk to a robot answer,” Buggs said. “Here you get a chance to be upfront and you're talking right to the experts.”
He noted that the residents responded extremely well to the various programs throughout the day, in addition to the informational booths. In general, Buggs said, the sentiment has been very positive from people in the community.
“The feedback is phenomenal,” said Buggs. “It opened up a lot of doors for the folks who have been here.”